Family members of three victims of the Volvo bus tragedy turn up at the venue to accept ex gratia

HYDERABAD: Emotional scenes and heated arguments prevailed at the ex gratia distribution programme organised by the A.P. Private Bus Owners’ Association (APPBOA) for the kin of the Mahabubnagar bus mishap victims at Press Club, Somajiguda, on Tuesday.

However, family members of only three victims arrived at the venue and collected demand drafts for Rs. 1 lakh per each victim, although the APPBOA members claimed that registered posts were sent to the kin of all the 45 victims well in advance, and that eight families had responded.

Mohd. Abdul Khadar, who lost his 25-year-old son Mohd. Arif in the incident, asked the association members as to why Jabbar Travels managing director Shakeel Jabbar was present at the venue.

“On what moral grounds are you attending this programme? People like you deserve death or life penalty. Bail should not be given to such people, as it would make others respect human lives,” shouted Mr. Khadar, while arguing with Jabbar.

The association members were taken aback, when the mother and wife of Mohd. Sardar, another victim, claimed to be the legal heirs. “We will take legal opinion and hand over the DD to the right person. All those who could not make it today (Tuesday) can collect the DDs later. But, we request the family members of the victims to carry the legal heir certificates with them,” said H.S.C. Bose, president, APPBOA.

Apart from the ex gratia, Mr. Bose said the victims could file petitions to the Motor Vehicle Claims Tribunal in their respective districts, as the ill-fated bus had a comprehensive insurance. The association will provide all necessary documents like fitness certificate and registration certificate, besides extending all help to the family members, he added.

There were heated arguments between Mr. Bose and media persons, when he accused the latter of presenting the private bus operators in poor light. However, he later apologised.

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